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Old 06-10-11, 11:25 AM   #1
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Why it is important for EVERYONE to stop at stop signs

Here is an example of why EVERYONE should stop at stop sings. I was at a three-way intersection last night. It's not your standard three-way intersection, the east/west leg of it is a sweeping curve merging into the north/south street.

Last night, I was headed south, there was another car that was headed north. Being as I got there just after the northbound car I waited for them to clear the intersection as they could have been making a left turn. Just as easily as they were going north.

I enter the intersection and this JAM is busying yakking on their bluetooth headset and doesn't even slow down for the stop sign. Forcing me to have to slam on my brakes to avoid hitting him.

He had his driver side window down and I just call out a nice loud "Hey!" Causing him to "lock up" his brakes and look around. I am pretty sure that after calling out my "Hey!" to him that he than saw me. The look on his face was priceless.

Hopefully, next time he'll be more careful and pay more attention to his driving.

This also helps to prove what others have said about how even using a handsfree kit can be too distracting, while driving.
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Old 06-10-11, 11:30 AM   #2
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I don't think the handfree is any better...you still spend time futzing with it, dialing in radio stations...etc.
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Old 06-10-11, 11:59 AM   #3
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I don't think the handfree is any better...you still spend time futzing with it, dialing in radio stations...etc.
Agreed, the law should be that the driver of any vehicle should NOT be able use any cell phone whether they're using a hands free kit or not. As it still takes their attention away from the task at hand, i.e. operating a potentially dangerous vehicle.

When I'm out riding IF I feel the need to answer, or make a call I will pull over to the side of the road out of the way of traffic and answer or return or make the call. And I do routinely use a bluetooth hands free headset. To me it just isn't worth the risk to talk on the phone (even with my bluetooth hands free headset) while riding.
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Old 06-10-11, 12:25 PM   #4
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That's why it pays to be attentive to your environment and be a defensive ride.
I would have not just yelled "HEY".
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Old 06-10-11, 12:35 PM   #5
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Allowing Handsfree calling is really dangerous. I suspect that it lulls the driver into even more complacency since he's calling "the safe way".
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Old 06-10-11, 12:37 PM   #6
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That's why it pays to be attentive to your environment and be a defensive ride.
I would have not just yelled "HEY".
Exactly, if I hadn't been paying attention I would have been hit by him. But knowing that this isn't your standard three-way intersection and that a lot of the traffic on the east/west leg doesn't always come to a full stop I keep an eye on that leg until I'm clear of it.

I have another intersection that is kind of similar to that one. It's just north of me going to PetSmart. It's an intersection at 4th St. N. & 77th Ave. N. To the west 77th Ave. N. is a divided road with a canal in the center. When turning west from the northbound lane one is going over a very short bridge over the canal and merges into east/west road. When traveling south there is no bridge, but there is the "sweeping curve" from over the bridge that is merging with the east/west road. Knowing that at any time that there could be traffic turning from the southbound direction I am constantly checking over my right shoulder to make sure I can safely merge over to the right lane.

Trust me, yelling "HEY" was enough. As it was enough to wake him up and pull him out of his "fog."
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Old 06-10-11, 12:38 PM   #7
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Allowing Handsfree calling is really dangerous. I suspect that it lulls the driver into even more complacency since he's calling "the safe way".
Exactly, it wouldn't surprise me if until I yelled "HEY" that he realized that he had ran the stop sign. As I said the look on the his face when I yelled "HEY" was priceless.
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Old 06-10-11, 12:46 PM   #8
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Inattention blindness. There was even a local researcher working on quantifying the phenomena.

http://www.timesunion.com/default/ar...al-1416065.php

Quote:
"We have used the term 'illusion of attention' to denote the common but mistaken belief that people pay attention to, and notice, more of their visual world than they actually do," the paper based on the experiment states.
So handsfree creates another illusion of attention which can have deadly consequences for those who ignore the signs.
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Old 06-10-11, 12:47 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Digital_Cowboy View Post
Here is an example of why EVERYONE should stop at stop sings. I was at a three-way intersection last night. It's not your standard three-way intersection, the east/west leg of it is a sweeping curve merging into the north/south street.

Last night, I was headed south, there was another car that was headed north. Being as I got there just after the northbound car I waited for them to clear the intersection as they could have been making a left turn. Just as easily as they were going north.

I enter the intersection and this JAM is busying yakking on their bluetooth headset and doesn't even slow down for the stop sign. Forcing me to have to slam on my brakes to avoid hitting him.

He had his driver side window down and I just call out a nice loud "Hey!" Causing him to "lock up" his brakes and look around. I am pretty sure that after calling out my "Hey!" to him that he than saw me. The look on his face was priceless.

Hopefully, next time he'll be more careful and pay more attention to his driving.

This also helps to prove what others have said about how even using a handsfree kit can be too distracting, while driving.
Instead of shouting at the driver, I usually stare at them n' shake my head.
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Old 06-10-11, 01:02 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Brontide View Post
Inattention blindness. There was even a local researcher working on quantifying the phenomena.

http://www.timesunion.com/default/ar...al-1416065.php

Quote:
"We have used the term 'illusion of attention' to denote the common but mistaken belief that people pay attention to, and notice, more of their visual world than they actually do," the paper based on the experiment states.
So handsfree creates another illusion of attention which can have deadly consequences for those who ignore the signs.
Very good article, and it makes a lot of sense.

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Instead of shouting at the driver, I usually stare at them n' shake my head.
Sadly, the way that this intersection is laid out that wasn't an option. As I said it's a sweeping curve that ends up going south. I don't normally travel on it traveling east so I'm not sure if traffic is allowed to turn right there are not, I suspect that it right turns are allowed. But create a whole another interesting set of circumstances.
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Old 06-10-11, 03:24 PM   #11
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Talking on the phone/intercom/whatever in any form is beyond simply "distracting". From personal experience I "space out" when I talk on the phone, losing eye focus ("staring into space") and some of my other other awareness of my physical surroundings to give greater attention/concentration to the conversation. It's entirely different than a conversation with someone who's physically present, and that kind of conversation is distracting enough as it is. Doubtless many will claim that they aren't "impaired" like I am, but hey I don't have to believe them either. I don't consider it at all safe to talk on the phone while driving (or riding).

Beyond that, you can never trust people to stop for stop signs or lights, or yield, or follow the roadway instead of zooming off into the bushes. You can never trust anyone on the road at any time. Period.
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Old 06-10-11, 03:26 PM   #12
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Allowing Handsfree calling is really dangerous. I suspect that it lulls the driver into even more complacency since he's calling "the safe way".
It most certainly does. They think by not focusing on holding a cellphone to their ear, their attention to driving is far improved.....in reality it is only marginal. While they have both hands on the steering wheel, a hands-free device doesn't lessen the attention needed for the same phone call.
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Old 06-10-11, 03:34 PM   #13
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Sadly, the way that this intersection is laid out that wasn't an option. As I said it's a sweeping curve that ends up going south. I don't normally travel on it traveling east so I'm not sure if traffic is allowed to turn right there are not, I suspect that it right turns are allowed. But create a whole another interesting set of circumstances.
I looked at your Google Maps link to the intersection. I see what you are saying about the dimensions of the road. Considering that it is like a three-way near my house, I can see how shouting would work.
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Old 06-10-11, 07:29 PM   #14
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Talking on the phone/intercom/whatever in any form is beyond simply "distracting". From personal experience I "space out" when I talk on the phone, losing eye focus ("staring into space") and some of my other other awareness of my physical surroundings to give greater attention/concentration to the conversation. It's entirely different than a conversation with someone who's physically present, and that kind of conversation is distracting enough as it is. Doubtless many will claim that they aren't "impaired" like I am, but hey I don't have to believe them either. I don't consider it at all safe to talk on the phone while driving (or riding).
I have no doubt that that is what happened in this case. He was busy talking away on his bluetooth headset and not paying any attention to what he was suppose to be doing i.e. his driving. Of course the "fun" aspect of this is that he (or anyone else doing as he was doing) could end up in the water.

Imagine the shocked look on their face when they're "suddenly" sinking in the water.

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Beyond that, you can never trust people to stop for stop signs or lights, or yield, or follow the roadway instead of zooming off into the bushes. You can never trust anyone on the road at any time. Period.
Sadly, this is too true. We have to constantly be on the look out for threats coming at us from all directions.

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It most certainly does. They think by not focusing on holding a cellphone to their ear, their attention to driving is far improved.....in reality it is only marginal. While they have both hands on the steering wheel, a hands-free device doesn't lessen the attention needed for the same phone call.
Agreed, and I think that this proves that point. It's not that talking on a bluetooth or other handsfree kit makes it "safe" or even "safer," it's still dangerous. It's just that they've been lolled into thinking that it's "safer."

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I looked at your Google Maps link to the intersection. I see what you are saying about the dimensions of the road. Considering that it is like a three-way near my house, I can see how shouting would work.
Yep, had I not been paying attention as I entered the intersection things could have been worse. And as I think I said the shocked look on his face was priceless. When I saw him a little further up the road I just ignored him and kept on pedaling past him.

I also meant to say that I'm not sure if left turns are allowed not right turns as a right turn would be consistent with the direction that one is traveling already.
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Old 06-10-11, 09:05 PM   #15
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Since I have more "skin" in the road game, is why I as a cyclist need to have a far higher level of situational awareness than most motorists, and a little mind reading can help at times too.
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Old 06-10-11, 09:44 PM   #16
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Since I have more "skin" in the road game, is why I as a cyclist need to have a far higher level of situational awareness than most motorists, and a little mind reading can help at times too.
Agreed, which is why I held back and allowed the northbound driver to clear or at least get far enough into the intersection so that I could tell that he wasn't going to make a turn onto 22nd Ave.

The driver that cut me off wasn't in sight yet so I entered the intersection. But by keeping an eye on 22nd Ave. I was able to be prepared for when traffic was or wasn't going to stop at the stop sign for their direction.

It'd be nice if more drivers were as aware of their surroundings as cyclists are, than maybe there wouldn't be so many crashes period. Be they car v. car, or car v. bike, or car v. pedestrian.
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Old 06-10-11, 09:55 PM   #17
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Here is an example of why EVERYONE should stop at stop sings.
Seems to me to simply be another reminder that while you can run stop signs ... so can everybody else, car or bike ... so ride (or drive) accordingly.

Running through stop signs at a low rate of speed is safe in most situations that there's not another card to yield to -- and if somebody was supposed to yield to you but didn't, you're going slow and can stop easily. Running through stop signs at a higher rate of speed is more risky, but it's safe if you really can verify that there are no other vehicles to worry about (and if there are or you can't be sure, you should be slowing down rather than assuming they'll stop when they should. After all, you aren't ...)

And even if you don't have a stop sign at all, it's often wise to keep in mind that the other vehicle that does may not stop -- so be ready to react appropriately if they don't.
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Old 06-10-11, 10:28 PM   #18
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Seems to me to simply be another reminder that while you can run stop signs ... so can everybody else, car or bike ... so ride (or drive) accordingly.

Running through stop signs at a low rate of speed is safe in most situations that there's not another card to yield to -- and if somebody was supposed to yield to you but didn't, you're going slow and can stop easily. Running through stop signs at a higher rate of speed is more risky, but it's safe if you really can verify that there are no other vehicles to worry about (and if there are or you can't be sure, you should be slowing down rather than assuming they'll stop when they should. After all, you aren't ...)

And even if you don't have a stop sign at all, it's often wise to keep in mind that the other vehicle that does may not stop -- so be ready to react appropriately if they don't.
Agreed, shortly after I'd gotten my Hardrock and had changed the MTB tires over to Road tires as well as swapping out the pedals. I was out riding it, when a motorist failed to stop for the stop sign. His "excuse" was the old "I didn't see you" excuse. He even tried to excuse it by saying that it was because I was riding a black bike.
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Old 06-11-11, 06:40 AM   #19
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I got clipped last year by a car that *did* stop at the stop sign and I had the through travel. I was in the center of the lane and he completed his stop and then pulled right in front of me. He didn't see me either.
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Old 06-11-11, 07:15 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by Digital_Cowboy View Post
Here is an example of why EVERYONE should stop at stop sings. I was at a three-way intersection last night. It's not your standard three-way intersection, the east/west leg of it is a sweeping curve merging into the north/south street.

Last night, I was headed south, there was another car that was headed north. Being as I got there just after the northbound car I waited for them to clear the intersection as they could have been making a left turn. Just as easily as they were going north.

I enter the intersection and this JAM is busying yakking on their bluetooth headset and doesn't even slow down for the stop sign. Forcing me to have to slam on my brakes to avoid hitting him.

He had his driver side window down and I just call out a nice loud "Hey!" Causing him to "lock up" his brakes and look around. I am pretty sure that after calling out my "Hey!" to him that he than saw me. The look on his face was priceless.

Hopefully, next time he'll be more careful and pay more attention to his driving.

This also helps to prove what others have said about how even using a handsfree kit can be too distracting, while driving.
Your story did nothing to illustrate the importance of stopping at stop signs. It made a strong case for paying attention to cross traffic at intersections, and it doesn't always take a stop to accomplish that.
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Old 06-11-11, 08:31 AM   #21
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Regarding the issue of people who argue that cell phone usage while driving isn't any more distracting than talking to another passenger, I'll offer the following observation:

Not once have I ever heard of someone on other end of the phone suddenly yell out, "Hey! You're about to run a stop sign!"

I have witnessed passengers in a car yell that very thing.
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Old 06-11-11, 09:14 AM   #22
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+1 for stopping at stop signs regardless of what cagers are doing like phone; shaving; makeup; kids, etc.
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Old 06-11-11, 09:22 AM   #23
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I don't think the handfree is any better...you still spend time futzing with it, dialing in radio stations...etc.
There is some science to support that, actually.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases...0129080944.htm
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Old 06-11-11, 11:16 AM   #24
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Here is an example of why EVERYONE should stop at stop sings. I was at a three-way intersection last night. It's not your standard three-way intersection, the east/west leg of it is a sweeping curve merging into the north/south street.

Last night, I was headed south, there was another car that was headed north. Being as I got there just after the northbound car I waited for them to clear the intersection as they could have been making a left turn. Just as easily as they were going north.

I enter the intersection and this JAM is busying yakking on their bluetooth headset and doesn't even slow down for the stop sign. Forcing me to have to slam on my brakes to avoid hitting him.

He had his driver side window down and I just call out a nice loud "Hey!" Causing him to "lock up" his brakes and look around. I am pretty sure that after calling out my "Hey!" to him that he than saw me. The look on his face was priceless.

Hopefully, next time he'll be more careful and pay more attention to his driving.

This also helps to prove what others have said about how even using a handsfree kit can be too distracting, while driving.

I'm not getting it. You said you waited for the intersection to clear. If so, why did you have to slam on your brakes?
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Old 06-11-11, 11:56 AM   #25
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Your story did nothing to illustrate the importance of stopping at stop signs. It made a strong case for paying attention to cross traffic at intersections, and it doesn't always take a stop to accomplish that.
Had the driver not been talking on his cell phone he would have (hopefully) stopped at the stop sign. That he was distracted by whatever phone conversation that he was carrying on he didn't see the stop sign.

And yes, it is important to pay attention to cross traffic.
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